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Italy Ports Capri, Florence, Genoa, Naples, Palermo, portofino, Rome, Sardinia, Sorrento, Taormina, Venice

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  #1  
Old April 20th, 2012, 02:18 PM
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Default Herculaneum

We will be stopping at Naples on our upcoming cruise and I'm considering visiting Herculaneum instead of Pompeii. I have a few questions.

I believe it is on the same train line as Pompeii but can someone tell me what stop I would be looking for?
I think the site is closer to Naples than Pompeii but can someone tell me the travel time, please?
Is it close enough that a taxi would be a viable option as a time saver?
Is there a museum at this site?
If not, with port times of 8am to 6pm would we have enough time to go to Herculaneum, return to Naples and visit the Archaeology Museum there?

We will be there in the beginning of October if that has an affect on the sites hours.
Thanks!
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Last edited by Sea42; April 20th, 2012 at 02:19 PM.
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  #2  
Old April 20th, 2012, 02:50 PM
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Originally Posted by Sea42 View Post
We will be stopping at Naples on our upcoming cruise and I'm considering visiting Herculaneum instead of Pompeii. I have a few questions.

I believe it is on the same train line as Pompeii but can someone tell me what stop I would be looking for? sorry, we took a taxi
I think the site is closer to Naples than Pompeii but can someone tell me the travel time, please? yes, Herculaneum is in town
Is it close enough that a taxi would be a viable option as a time saver? Absolutely!
Is there a museum at this site? no
If not, with port times of 8am to 6pm would we have enough time to go to Herculaneum, return to Naples and visit the Archaeology Museum there? yes, you are not leaving Naples at all. You even have time for a pizza at one of the 2 places that swear they invented pizza.

We will be there in the beginning of October if that has an affect on the sites hours.
Thanks!
We've been lucky enough to visit naples twice so have been to both Pompeii and Herculaneum. We enjoyed Herculaneum much more because the city is fairly "intact", unlike Pompeii.
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  #3  
Old April 20th, 2012, 04:06 PM
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Originally Posted by Sea42 View Post
We will be stopping at Naples on our upcoming cruise and I'm considering visiting Herculaneum instead of Pompeii. I have a few questions.

I believe it is on the same train line as Pompeii but can someone tell me what stop I would be looking for?
I think the site is closer to Naples than Pompeii but can someone tell me the travel time, please?
Is it close enough that a taxi would be a viable option as a time saver?
Is there a museum at this site?
If not, with port times of 8am to 6pm would we have enough time to go to Herculaneum, return to Naples and visit the Archaeology Museum there?

We will be there in the beginning of October if that has an affect on the sites hours.
Thanks!
The stop is called Ercolano Scavi.

It is closer to Naples than Pompeii; I did it coming from the other direction (Sorrento) but I'd say it's about 20 minutes.

Can't answer re: the taxi, but the train is pretty easy. Once you get off the train, you'll walk downhill down a major road with the train station at your back. This road basically dead-ends at the entrance to Herculaneum in about 4-5 blocks -- you can't miss it.

There's no museum onsite.

Yes, you should have enough time to do both Herculaneum and the Archaeology Museum.

I have a lot of info on Herculaneum, included notes for a self-guided tour (having just done it a few weeks ago). If you want to give me an email, I'd be happy to send it to you.
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Old April 20th, 2012, 05:24 PM
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Hi there,

I see cruisemom42 has answered most of your questions so I just wanted to concur that Herculaneum is well worth visiting.

I have been to both Pompeii and Herculaneum and enjoyed both however I do think Herculaneum is often overlooked sadly as it is in fact a much better preserved site, many of the villas are far more impressive than those at Pompeii due to it being a prosperous seaside resort for wealthy Romans.

I'm sure you could see both Herculaneum and the museum in your time scale.

There are private guides that you could pre-book should you wish for Herculaneum also. I remember seeing some when we were organising our cruise last year but we ended up booking a different itinerary so I do not have any information any more on guides or personal experience of any I'm afraid.

I'm also not sure about your question regarding the taxi as I have never been to Herculaneum from a cruise, it's always been part of a land based holiday. I'm sure someone will be along who does have that information though.

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Old April 20th, 2012, 05:39 PM
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Thank you, everyone, for your information.

For us, I think Herculaneum is the way to go. With 16 different ports in 20 days I'm trying to minimize travel times to and from sites while still doing something unique to each port. Sometimes it's exhausting just reading over all that we have planned for 3 weeks time. LOL We will use taxis in some ports if the time and effort saved will be worth the extra cost.

Cruisemom42, I would really appreciate it if you would send me your notes at: carold 2765 @ yahoo .com (just remove the spaces)

Thanks so much!
Carol
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Last edited by Sea42; April 20th, 2012 at 05:40 PM.
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Old April 20th, 2012, 05:46 PM
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I also had wanted to visit the Archeological Museum, and it's closed the day we are in port, so be sure to check that too!
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Old April 21st, 2012, 05:00 PM
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Cruisemom42......you mentioned you did Herculaneum after visiting Sorrento. I would be interested in your insight. We arrive Naples on NCL on 5/2 @ 8am. Was thinking of taking 9am hydrofoil from Naples to Sorrento, spending 3 hours and then going to Herculaneum on way back to Naples via Circumvesuviana train. How long do you think Herculaneum requires time wise ?? Ideally, have to be back in Naples by 5:30pm as cruise ship leaves at 7pm. Can be reached at nygvic@gmail .com if you wish to share any info. Thanks !!
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Old April 21st, 2012, 06:05 PM
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I also had wanted to visit the Archeological Museum, and it's closed the day we are in port, so be sure to check that too!
It's closed on Tuesdays.
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Old April 21st, 2012, 07:03 PM
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Cruisemom42......you mentioned you did Herculaneum after visiting Sorrento. I would be interested in your insight. We arrive Naples on NCL on 5/2 @ 8am. Was thinking of taking 9am hydrofoil from Naples to Sorrento, spending 3 hours and then going to Herculaneum on way back to Naples via Circumvesuviana train. How long do you think Herculaneum requires time wise ?? Ideally, have to be back in Naples by 5:30pm as cruise ship leaves at 7pm. Can be reached at nygvic@gmail .com if you wish to share any info. Thanks !!
I'd say you need a bare minimum of 2 hours to see the site at Herculaneum. Some do it in less, but miss quite a bit. Thinking back, I'd say that we spent 5 hours on site when we went. We had planned to visit Herculaneum in the morning and Villa Oplontis in the the afternoon, but once we got to Herculaneum we realized we'd need longer there than we had anticipated. (I realize most people won't have the same desire to see things in depth.)

Remember to allow about an hour for taking the train from Sorrento to Herculaneum, then another 20 minutes or so from Herculaneum to Naples.

If you decide Herculaneum is a yes, I'm happy to send you my notes.
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 11:56 AM
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Yesterday in Naples, taxi driversto get to Herculaneumwait for you, and you don't pay until you're back. So that may be an option for you. Unlike Pompeii, it's a bit of a walk from the Circumvesuviana station.
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 01:18 PM
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The set fare for a taxi from Naples to Ercolano (Herculeneum) and back, with a three hour visit to the ruins, is 70 Euro. You can download the set taxi fares from the city web site here: http://www.comune.napoli.it/flex/cm/.../IDPagina/6665 (page two is in English)

If you choose to take the Circumvesuviana train, the walk from the station to the entrance is one third of a mile, straight down Via 4 Novembre.
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 05:57 PM
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The set fare for a taxi from Naples to Ercolano (Herculeneum) and back, with a three hour visit to the ruins, is 70 Euro. You can download the set taxi fares from the city web site here: http://www.comune.napoli.it/flex/cm/.../IDPagina/6665 (page two is in English)

If you choose to take the Circumvesuviana train, the walk from the station to the entrance is one third of a mile, straight down Via 4 Novembre.
I am sure that you could also get a taxi to take you to Herculaneum and then on to Sorrento for less than the 170 euro for the 2 as listed. You are not doing the return journey from Herculaneum. My friend just bargained with the taxi driver and they had one taxi for the whole day and it really did not cost them that much when divided by 4. The taxis are all lined up outside the port ready to encourage you to go with them rather than by train.

We ignored the taxis and reversed the journey that you are suggesting. We took the train to Sorrento and then came back by hydrofoil. We did not go to Herculaneum, but we would have had lots of time to do it. We would have simply left the ship a bit earlier. It was a good trip and we had a great pizza (and limoncello) by the hydrofoil - it was one of the best parts of the trip for me. Hmm I like limoncello.

When you are looking for the local vesuviana train in Naples, look carefully on the map. The first station is nearer to the ship than the main station. It saves a bit of walking.

There were lots of shops at Naples port. I assumed it is because Naples does not have a brilliant reputation as a safe destination so they want to get as much tax from tourists as possible.
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 06:06 PM
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Maybe you can get it less, maybe not. The taxi driver is not allowed to pick up a fare outside of his zone, so the trip to Ercolano is a deadhead back for him. That's why the one way fares look pretty much like a round trip fare.
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Old April 23rd, 2012, 03:10 AM
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Is there a public WC at the Herculaneum site or nearby? Thanks
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Old April 23rd, 2012, 07:52 AM
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The stop is called Ercolano Scavi.

It is closer to Naples than Pompeii; I did it coming from the other direction (Sorrento) but I'd say it's about 20 minutes.

Can't answer re: the taxi, but the train is pretty easy. Once you get off the train, you'll walk downhill down a major road with the train station at your back. This road basically dead-ends at the entrance to Herculaneum in about 4-5 blocks -- you can't miss it.

There's no museum onsite.

Yes, you should have enough time to do both Herculaneum and the Archaeology Museum.

I have a lot of info on Herculaneum, included notes for a self-guided tour (having just done it a few weeks ago). If you want to give me an email, I'd be happy to send it to you.
Yes I would love any notes you have as we will be visiting next summer! Thanks in advance

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Old April 23rd, 2012, 08:08 AM
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Is there a public WC at the Herculaneum site or nearby? Thanks
There are restrooms in the small building where you purchase your tickets. I'm unsure if there are any down in the site itself; I don't recall running across any but perhaps someone else will know.
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Old April 23rd, 2012, 08:16 AM
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Note to anyone visiting Herculaneum soon: Several of the nicer houses are closed for further restoration. These the following houses on the street called Cardo IV, at the end that would've been overlooking the water: House of the Relief of Telephus, House of the Gem, and House of the Deer.

Of course, the Villa dei Papiri has been closed for quite a long time already with restoration work. Also, the Palaestra had ongoing work when we were there and we could not get in.

Still lots to see though...!
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Old April 23rd, 2012, 02:30 PM
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There is also a WC near the little suspension bridge that leads into the site, close to where they rent out the audioguides.
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Old April 23rd, 2012, 07:21 PM
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Note to anyone visiting Herculaneum soon: Several of the nicer houses are closed for further restoration. These the following houses on the street called Cardo IV, at the end that would've been overlooking the water: House of the Relief of Telephus, House of the Gem, and House of the Deer.

Of course, the Villa dei Papiri has been closed for quite a long time already with restoration work. Also, the Palaestra had ongoing work when we were there and we could not get in.

Still lots to see though...!
I was a little concerned about that after reading the following review on Trip Advisor.

I visited Herculaneum on Sunday the 18th of March, a day after I went to Pompeii. Herculaneum certainly has a few impressive pieces worth seeing, but its smaller size and the large proportion of the site that was closed made it a much less interesting experience than Pompeii. I am not sure if so much of the site was closed because it was a Sunday, or on a more long-term basis. I can, however, confirm that the main Baths, the Theatre, the museum with preserved Roman boat, the boathouses (where many of its citizens died), the cafe, and several of the major houses were all closed to the public when I visited.

As it was the only review that made comments about the closures I didn't pay too much attention. After going over the tour notes that you so kindly sent it seems to me that there is still plenty of buildings that are viewable to make the trip worth while for us.
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Old April 27th, 2012, 06:36 PM
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Ok, now I can not decide.... We would like to spend about 3 hours looking at a variety of buildings that are in pretty good condition. I had set my heart on Herculaneum but with the list of closures, I'm just not sure. Plus a friend who did both many years ago definitely recommended Pompeii.

Thoughts??
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